Update: Also check out the Citi Forward® Card for College Students.
As I was reminded in my best cash back credit cards post, the Citi Forward card is a great rewards card for those who spend a lot on restaurants and at Amazon.com. That’s not everyone, but sure sounds like me in my 20s. Okay, okay… it sounds a lot like me now. What can I say, I still love food, friends, and Amazon Prime 2-day shipping. I have this card saved as the default card on my Amazon.com account for the 5x points, choosing this card over the Amazon-branded credit card. Why?
The Citi Forward® Card earns 5 points for every $1 you spend on restaurants, book stores including Amazon.com, video rental stores, and movie theaters. On everything else, you get the plain vanilla 1 reward point for every $1 spent. The important part is that I have confirmed that all Amazon.com purchases count as a bookstore under their categorization system (books, textbooks, music, electronics, cool pumpkin-carving tools, etc).
The news here is that they just added a new 10,000 ThankYou point sign-up bonus, redeemable for $100 in gift cards for new cardholders to stores like Home Depot, Macy’s, Gap, etc. You must make $650 in purchases and sign up for paperless statements within the first 3 months. That is the best sign-up offer they have ever had for this card, as I got this card when it first came out.
Alternative for 10k points include a $100 Amazon.com gift card, or you can also get a check for $100 towards your student loan and/or mortgage. You also get another 100 points each month just for paying your bill on time and not going over your credit limit. No annual fee.